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Vyke connects a user with any phone at a very low cost, without the need for both parties to be signed up to the service, and has been described as almost free. In 2016 Vyke added extra mobile phone numbers and free calls and instant messages to other Vyke users to the app.
Vyke headquarters are in London, UK.
The company was founded as Maskina in 2000 in Reykjavik, Iceland. In early 2003 Maskina and Viva Technologies merged. On 31 December 2000 Maskina was purchased from Viva Technologies by Maskina AS. After a reverse merger with Tower PLC, the company was listed on the London stock exchange on 27 June 2005. This was followed by a name change to Vyke Communications PLC. In 2008 Vyke Communications PLC took over Callserve Communications, a VoIP telephony company with similar solutions to those of Vyke and years of experience in the industry. In April 2011, after running into financial problems, Vyke Communications PLC went into administration. The following month TIH Ventures Limited, a private equity firm with an emphasis on telephony solutions, bought the rights to Vyke and its business. In January 2014 Vyke launched VykeBusiness, a mobile VoIP application for the enterprise market. In September 2015 the Vyke employees completed a management buyout and began a crowdfunding campaign hosted on the Seedrs platform.
Vyke is an Android and iOS app that allows users to initiate phone calls and SMS from their SIM number or from a Vyke mobile number via Wi-Fi or WLAN, mobile data, callback or using local access numbers. The user’s mobile phone acts in the same manner as a traditional VoIP computer-based call, or a call made from a softphone, but is instead made and received on a normal mobile phone. Chargeable calls are charged at the same rate as a Vyke PC-to-phone call. Users can also receive calls on their Vyke numbers.
Vyke Mobile-VoIP was first released on 28 March 2007 with a promotional release on 5 December 2007 from more than 9500 hotspots in the London metropolitan area, UK. Vyke became a Nokia preferred partner after Nokia entered into a global distribution agreement with Vyke to distribute Vyke Mobile-VoIP in October 2007.
The Vyke app provides extra mobile phone numbers without the need for an additional SIM card or mobile device. Incoming and outgoing calls and messages are delivered over the internet and the app utilises push technology to provide this funcationality in real time. Vyke offers number ranges in the UK, USA, Canada, The Netherlands and Poland to users all over the world. Vyke numbers can be used to receive calls anywhere in the world, with the caller charged at local rates.
VykeBusiness is a mobile application providing low cost calls and SMS designed for business use. The app allows low cost international calls and SMS to any phone, and free calls and IM within the user's network, all controlled from a central management tool. The application is available for iPhone, Android and Blackberry 7. VykeBusiness was released in January 2014.
Vyke PC app allows users to call mobile and fixed telephones locally and internationally for a fee, using a softphone downloaded on to a Windows PC.
At the Vyke.com portal, registered users of Vyke services can set up calls to their phone (Callback or Local Access calls) from an internet browser and also send web SMS to any phone.
- Provides additional mobile numbers on an existing smartphone
- Free calls to other Vyke users
- Free instant messaging to other Vyke users
- Low cost international calls to mobiles and landlines
- Eliminate roaming charges when connected to Wi-Fi when abroad
- Make calls from current SIM card or make and receive calls from Vyke numbers
- Flexible calling options – Wi-Fi, Mobile Data, Local Access, Callback and Remote Call
- Access your phone contacts
- Caller ID displays on each number
- See who is calling and on which line
- Balance display
- Buy credit directly on your phone
- No contracts or connection fees
- Wi-Fi: User connects to the Vyke network using Wi-Fi, Vyke connects the call.
- Mobile data: Connect to the Vyke network using mobile data (3G or 4G), Vyke connects your call.
- Local Access: Connect to the Vyke network using your local GSM minutes, Vyke connects your call.
- Callback: Vyke callback utilizes ANI callback services to connect two phone numbers. The user initiates a call by sending a data request from the smartphone app. The caller is called back, and the second leg of the call is connected to the destination number.
- Remote Call: Remote Call is similar to Callback but the user can connect any two phones numbers.
- Security concerns: The top threats to security for VoIP technology in 2008 were Denial of service attacks on VoIP networks, VoIP eavesdropping, Microsoft office communications server, Vishing by VoIP and VoIP attacks against service providers. Of these, only VoIP eavesdropping is of significant concern to Vyke products and services.
- Emergency numbers: Emergency calls are not supported by any of Vyke’s products.
- Quality of service: Quality of service (QOS) As VoIP is highly reliant on Internet connection, many of the industry's key players suffered from poor quality as compared to landlines and GSM phones during the early stages of VoIP. Vyke promises to use only "White Routing" for reliability and good quality. Improvements in internet and mobile data connectivity has seen a large increase in the use of VoIP services for business and consumers.
- Customer service: Vyke only provides email based customer service.
- Voice call encryption.
- Conference calls.
- Server side address book storage.
- Address book import tools from Skype, Yahoo! Messenger, etc.
- Answering machine test call.
- Online chat.
- Instant messaging.
Vyke was awarded the 2007 Internet Telephony Product of the Year Award by Technology Marketing Corporation.
- The Register - Vyke moves VoIP battle to SMS
- Admission document available here.
- Seedrs website.
- Trusted Reviews
- Vyke website
- "Vyke launches full commercial mobile VoIP service from more than 9,500 hotspots and metropolitan area networks." Retrieved 18 August 2008.
- "Nokia distribution agreement for Vyke mobile Voip service." Retrieved 18 August 2008
- "The Top 5 VoIP Security Threats of 2008." Retrieved 10 February 2008.
- "Examining Two Well-Known Attacks on VoIP." Retrieved 10 February 2008.
- Vyke Award from TMC